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Showing posts from November, 2017

Youth Work

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What does it look like to be a Youth Worker?

It looks like walking the hallways of a high school and connecting with students throughout the ups and downs of their day.

It looks like attending an awesome early morning breakfast club for youth who do not get fed breakfast or families who can’t afford a strong meal for their kids to start off the day. It may look like hanging out and serving bagels, but it means having the opportunity to interact with hundreds of students each week. It means that these youth have a familiar face to connect with and, as we build trust, I may be that someone who can walk alongside them through the hard times.

It looks like joining the humanitarian club at the school, to help interact with youth about issues facing our world and to work alongside them to help make positive changes as we give back to the community.

It looks like leading new projects.  In September, I began leading our new Student Life initiative.  Our team recruited students from across th…

Things I've Overheard

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‘Thanks to Youth Unlimited, I can now make eye contact with men. I never had a safe male figure in my life before.’
‘Wednesday’s are my family. This is my safe space.’
‘Church isn’t safe. [The hangar] is safe.’
‘I stay at school as long as I can because it’s too hard to be home.’
‘I guess I should start considering that God may be real.’
A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of praying for a student who wanted healing from their childhood relationships with their family. They did not believe in God but felt they were at a place where they didn’t know what else to do. That same night, I listened to a student share with me how home was no longer a place where they wanted to be. The situation there had become too overwhelming and they chose to stay at school as late as possible in order to avoid facing home.
A week earlier, a co-worker of mine helped to diffuse an anxiety attack a student was experiencing as they felt as though all of their safe places were crumbling around them. When it…

On Behalf of Danny

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Several times per week I find myself thinking about how much tenacity and patience it takes to dedicate one’s life to working with youth. That’s how often I find myself thinking of my Youth Unlimited friends: Danny, Derian, Jon, Savannah, Rachel, Amy and others who have gone before them... they might not all know it, but they are family to me.

My friendship with Danny Ferguson dates to 2009. He has walked alongside me through many of the most difficult moments of my life, always listening, praying for me and challenging me. My life would be in shambles without his friendship.

At some point in 2015, Danny asked if I would be interested in volunteering with youth at “The Hangar”. He noted to me, “it might not be your thing”, warning me ahead of time of some of what I might experience; raw and uncensored, broken families, abusive situations, self-harming, angry, confused, depressed, the gamut. Undeterred (I spent a chunk of my youth growing up in a trailer park of prostitutes and heroin…

November Prayer Requests

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- please pray for our Spiritual Life program as we walk through the Just Us training videos
- prayer for a student whose Grandpa and Uncle are dying
- prayer for a student who had a unique encounter with God - pray that they continue to be curious rather than run away or ignore
- prayer for the students going through our Student Life program - pray that the students would be challenged to grow and encouraged with how far they have come
- prayer for a number of us who are currently fundraising